The LEED Platinum Case Study Nobody Wants You To Read

6 thoughts on “The LEED Platinum Case Study Nobody Wants You To Read”

  1. And what does this actually have to do with LEED? As Chris Cheatham noted, it is about the inappropriate use of parallam which "had not been treated to the levels prescribed by the contract documents or else the preservative had deteriorated because it was unsuitable for the application."

    The failure has nothing to do with LEED, it is about a bad choice of materials and finishes. Other than in the quote from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, it never even is mentioned in the body of your article. So why does the title of the post that seems to blame LEED for this problem?

    1. Lloyd – thanks for commenting. I'm a huge fan of you and your work. Regarding your question, the answer is very simple:… – this project was (before Bullitt Center) heralded as "one of the greenest buildings ever constructed." The point of the post and the point of the headline is that the promises of green building will never be realized until we, as an industry, can figure out how to achieve better quality.

      My whole point isn't that LEED is to blame, it is that even LEED Platinum offers no guarantees regarding durability, resiliency, and just plain common sense. Our industry has major problems: decreasing skilled labor, increasing building complexity (and with it, risk), decreasing insurance coverage, shifting understandings of standard of care, and most importantly, no established standards of practice for managing quality. We have to find better ways of bridging the gap between the intended quality, and the quality that is actually delivered consistently on a daily basis.

      The problems with Merrill Center are all too common. And that IS the point. The biggest risk to sustainable design and construction isn't from political interests or naysayers – it is from our industry's own inability to achieve quality.

      (Just to clarify, I am not a LEED-basher. In fact, I'm head of the marketing committee for the San Diego Green Building Council and I'm volunteering with our chapter's Green Assistance Program. Our latest project is getting some buildings built in the 1930s LEED certified under Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance.)

      I hope we can continue this dialogue.

  2. Thanks for the response. You make a very good point about the USGBC still having it up there, not good marketing.

    It has been years since I commented on another blog, not wanting to invite the same on my posts. It's fun, I may do it again.

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